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Croatia - Greece ( Round 2, 1st Leg, 9 Nov. 2017, Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb )

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19 minutes ago, Ellada2004 said:

What happened to Donis? This stinks

Shoulder injury. Out 5-6 weeks.. this absolutely sucks... I haven't heard of anyone of importance injured for Croatia... can't we have a healthy team just once damn it.  If we plan on having a shot here we need everyone healthy..

Edited by J1078

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All the sporting websites are not giving greece a chance in hell of beating Croatia.. I love it keep under estimating us..

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We will be fine without Donis, just like we did without Karelia..kid has just really come onto the seen last couple matches 

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2 hours ago, J1078 said:

Shoulder injury. Out 5-6 weeks.. this absolutely sucks... I haven't heard of anyone of importance injured for Croatia... can't we have a healthy team just once damn it.  If we plan on having a shot here we need everyone healthy..

That’s a tough break for him. Hopefully Manolas is 100%

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1 hour ago, J1078 said:

All the sporting websites are not giving greece a chance in hell of beating Croatia.. I love it keep under estimating us..

I’ve been reading all the pundits picking Croatia and many Croatians saying that we are  no match for them. Even the Bosnians keep chiming in talking trash about us, how Croatia will take us easily, lol. Time to KO the Croats.

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7 hours ago, Ellada2004 said:

Does Croatia have any problems on the injury front? 

kovacic of real madrid (midfielder), brozovic of inter (winger) and pjaca of juventus (winger)

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Greece should be well prepared having played Bosnia & Herzegovina in WCQ recently. Croatia just like Bosnia & Herzegovina have a very dangerous, big striker whom is good in the air, two world class playmakers but if there is a weakness it might be their defense.

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i think dzeko is a better striker than mandzukic but the latter can play in the wings and is more versatile so he can cause more problems. unlike dzeko who will be sitting in the box waiting for his teammates to feed him.

probable croatian squad;

subasic

pivaric lovren vida vrsaljko

rakitic modrid rog 

mandzukid kramaric perisic

it will be crucial for zeca to make modric eat his tongue and control the midfield. and of course don't start tziolis because he will be abused. 

 

i hope at least for manolas and karelis to be back, the former because we have built a chemistry on the defensive end and the latter becuase with donis out we don't have much options up front. however probably skibbe will try not to lose in zagreb and will use stafylidis and mantalos as wingers in a 4-4-1-1 formation, with fortounis and mitroglou putting pressure on their cbs and not letting them to build up the play as it happened in the brussels game. if we execute the same game plan it would be perfect, and i think we will have more opportunities to score than we had again belgium. and in form mitroglou will surely exploit them.

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im aware of that, just compared mandzukic to dzeko. 

but they both have that typical balkan mentality and all you need is to piss them off a bit if they struggle to score. there they lose their mind. 

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it looks like skibbe would be done in case we'd miss the playoffs, the rumour has been flying around this morning. not that id agree with that but missing the playoffs after having the upper hand for the most of the campaign would be devasting. he must be thankful the cyprus game was late in the campaign otherwise i could see us easily missing it the way we did play for the most part. it wasn't that pretty tbh.

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I believe Skibbe's contract is only through the cup anyway. No results = no new contract, sounds reasonable to me.

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The epo will not renew Skibbe's contract if he doesn't make the world cup. That's why the article was released saying the epo wants to see what happens with the playoffs before they make a decision on resigning him..

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Given that Croatia's strength is midfield, I would play Zeka as RM & Stafilidis as LM. Furthermore, this is the game to possible consider Siopis and/or Kourbelis; A midfield of

  --------  Siopis

Zeka -- Kourbelis -- Stafilidis

 

can suffocate Croatia; plus Kourbelis is a better Tsiolis (strong, tall but better one-one defender and better passer).

Of course this assume that we play for 0-0.

 

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For sure Skibbe will play for the 0-0 tie and take his chance at home for the win.. There is no way he will open up at all in Croatia.. all men back..

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Agreed. Expect the most defensive possible lineup. Just have to hope some of our players decide to break the rules and actually attack (I'm looking at you, Stafylidis).

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0-0 is not a good result because if we concede a goal at home it will be impossible to make it. id rather try to score at zagreb, wouldn't mind an 1-1 draw for example. anyways id take a scoreless draw too, but we don't need to open up at home. the way i see it we better score an away goal, concede 1 at the worst case and come back home to defend till death. 

id try to 'win' a couple of yellow cards to their players that are one yellow away from suspension. it would be huge. 

Edited by Boxou

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2 hours ago, PaoOle said:

Given that Croatia's strength is midfield, I would play Zeka as RM & Stafilidis as LM. Furthermore, this is the game to possible consider Siopis and/or Kourbelis; A midfield of

  --------  Siopis

Zeka -- Kourbelis -- Stafilidis

 

can suffocate Croatia; plus Kourbelis is a better Tsiolis (strong, tall but better one-one defender and better passer).

Of course this assume that we play for 0-0.

 

Kourbelis is 5'11.5, not short by any means but Tziolis is clean 6'4 so there is a difference height.

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3 minutes ago, Argy said:

Kourbelis is 5'11.5, not short by any means but Tziolis is clean 6'4 so there is a difference height.

sorry; I thought he was 6.2; by point is that as he also plays CB, so he is strong and good in the air.

Anyway, Skibe will never play Siopis and Kourbelis in this game.

He will go with

------ Tsiolis

Zeka    Stafilidis

 

What I don't know if he choose Samaris instead of Mandalos.

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samaris instead of mantalos? they don't play in the same position bro. neither stafylidis is a midfielder. 

zeca and samaris will start in the midfield with mantalos and stafylidis playing on the wings, fortounis as a playmaker and mitroglou upfront. backline the same as usual. 

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18 minutes ago, Boxou said:

samaris instead of mantalos? they don't play in the same position bro. neither stafylidis is a midfielder. 

zeca and samaris will start in the midfield with mantalos and stafylidis playing on the wings, fortounis as a playmaker and mitroglou upfront. backline the same as usual. 

I wouldn`t be surprised if there if they play 3 DMs Tziolis, Zeca, Samaris and the just Mantalos and Fortounis in more attacking roles. 

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stafs primary position is LB but he can also do LM as a secondary position.

I think we might go with something like this

                  Mitro

Staf        Fortouni     Laz/Zeca

            Kpaps Zeca/Samaris

Tzav Sokratis Manolas Toro

                    Karnezis

 

my prediction is 1-1 game 1 and 0-0 game 2 to see us through...

 

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I would love to see Kpap on DM but I feel as though Skibbe may not trust his discipline in such a crucial game, especially playing out of position. 

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